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Calling This A “Sticky Situation” Would Be Too Easy

, , , , , | Working | CREDIT: bradley547 | June 14, 2021

I’m a cash register repair guy. I’m sent to repair a cash register at a mini-mart in a popular beach town. They have a service contract and two cash registers, so I don’t expect any drama. The drive out there takes about an hour, but it’s gorgeous, so I’m in a good mood when I get on site.

One of their registers “just stopped working” in the middle of a shift. I do the normal troubleshooting and find that the lights are on but nobody’s home; the machine has power but isn’t accepting any user input. While I am troubleshooting, the two cashiers are trading off on the one working register and the owners — a husband and wife couple — are deflecting rude customers. I pop the cover off of the register.

Me: “Well, there’s your problem.” *To the owner* “Looks like someone spilled into the keyboard. Looks like coffee with cream and sugar.”


My head snaps to my left and I see [Cashier #1] with her hand over her mouth and eyes wide as saucers. She then runs out of the shop, and [Cashier #2] and the owners burst into laughter.

It turns out that [Cashier #2] drinks his coffee black, like all truly good people. The owners drink tea, but I’m open to alternative lifestyles. Only [Cashier #1] drinks coffee with cream and sugar

Apparently, she had done the deed, but rather than fess up, she was hoping the problem would either go away on its own or not be traceable to her. My detective skills had convicted her of the crime.

Fortunately, the coffee never made it to the electronics, and I quickly replaced the keyboard matrix and returned the machine to service.

As I was leaving, I saw the owners escorting the most hangdog-looking cashier back into the store. She was still there the next time I serviced the site, so I suspect her only punishment was a healthy dose of embarrassment.

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The Barista’s F-Word

, , , | Right | June 10, 2021

My coffee shop isn’t a Starbucks. We are in no way affiliated with Starbucks, nor do we have any signage that looks like Starbucks. A woman comes in, places a huge order, and tries to pay with her Starbucks app.

Me: “Sorry, ma’am, we can’t accept that.”

Of course, she gets mad at ME.

This happens more times than it really should have. Someone comes in and orders a cappuccino. But when they receive it, they stare at it with confusion and say, “This is hot. I wanted a Frappuccino.”

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A Tale Of Two Williams

, , , , , | Right | June 5, 2021

A man comes into my well-known coffee shop and walks up to the mobile order pickup side.

Me: “Hi! Are you here to pick up a mobile order?”

Man: “Yes.”

Me: “What’s the name on your order?”

Man: “William.”

I check the mobile orders and find one hot blonde roast for that name.

Me: “Here you go!”

Man: “I didn’t order anything hot. It should be two cold drinks and a food item.”

Me: “Huh, that’s weird.”

The man is obviously starting to get irritated. I check the mobile order screen and find nothing under “William” matching that description.

Me: “I don’t see that on my end. Do you have your phone to check? Sometimes weird things happen.”

The man pulls out his phone, pulls up the order, and shoves it in my face.

Me: “Ah, I see the problem. Your order was sent to the store at [Next Block Over] and [Twenty Blocks Down].”

Man: “That’s f****** r*****ed. I’m sorry to use that word, but that’s f****** stupid. I ordered from your parking lot and gave it access to my location. How is it sending my order to another store?”

Me: *Putting on a very bland customer service face* “I’m sorry, sir—”

Man: “I bet you hear a lot of this, huh?”

Me: “Yes, our app isn’t the greatest at locations and it is a problem. I’m very sorry. Would you like to pick up your order at the other store, or we could make it here for you?”

Man: “Well, obviously I want to get it from here!”

Me: “Of course. What was on your order?”

I grab two cups and scribble his order on them and then hand them off to a barista. The other barista gets his food order started while I walk to the back to tell the manager in frustration about the man who apparently couldn’t check where his order was being sent at any of the steps in the process, where it straight-up asks you where to send it at least once.

When I come out from the back, William is still standing at the counter with both his drinks and his food.

Man: “Hey, I wanted to apologize for being short with you. None of this was in any way your fault.”

Me: “Thank you, sir. I’m just glad we could get everything together for you quickly.”

Man: “I appreciate it. Have a good day.”

Me: “You, too.”

As he walks away, another man walks up to the counter.

Man #2: “Hi, I’m here to pick up for William?”

Me: “Ah. Here’s your hot blonde roast, William.”

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And That’s The Tea

, , , , | Working | June 4, 2021

I order a tea at a coffee shop drive-thru, and I check it when I receive it because the tea smells wrong. Someone grabbed two different types of tea bags; I ordered a large green tea, and they put in one green and one Earl Grey. I hand the tea back to the barista.

Me: “I’m sorry, but you made a mistake. I ordered a green tea but this is half green and half Earl Grey.”

Barista: “Will you take it anyway?”

I stare at him in astonishment.

Me: “No.”

For those who are not tea drinkers, Earl Grey has a very strong flavor that is not at all the same as green tea.

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Some Owners Never Own Up To Their Shortcomings

, , , , , | Working | CREDIT: Shallow-ishPuddle | June 3, 2021

I work in a coffee shop, my first chain coffee shop after working only at local or family-run ones. Simply put, it is h***. The owners micromanage everything without knowing anything about how the business runs, never listen to their staff, and only care about the money. Typical out-of-touch owners of a business.

I was hired to replace a manager that walked out of one of their locations, leaving it with only part-time staff. I was told I was being hired on as the “acting manager” until they either hired someone else or they felt I would be a good fit for the position after my six-month probation.

I am expected to cover all no-shows, which has me working 90 to 100 hours a week. I’m not allowed to fire anyone, no matter how many things they do wrong — someone actually showed up to work drunk and I STILL wasn’t allowed to fire them — and any changes I want to implement are shot down, like replacing old parts in the espresso machine, shortening our hours to save money on labor, bringing in items that customers would always ask for, etc.

I am stressed, overworked, and irritated as h*** when the owner comes in to talk to me about sales for the store.

Owner: “We aren’t making enough to warrant the hours you have scheduled, and I’m not going to pay you for overtime anymore. You will work only the hours you’re scheduled, and if anyone no-shows, you have to have someone else cover those shifts.”

Me: “I only come in when no one else will cover; it just so happens that the people you’ve allowed to continue to work here have terrible availability. Making the schedule is already hard enough; getting someone other than myself to come in on their day off is next to impossible. On top of all that, I’ve had to learn the ropes myself. There was no one to train me, so all the managerial knowledge, ordering, scheduling, I learned myself. No one other than me knows how to order coffee or has the numbers for the repair guys. I’m the only one who knows how to do anything other than making coffee and using the till.”

Owner: “All I’m hearing are excuses. This is your store. If you can’t handle running it, I’ll start looking for someone who will.”

Me: “Wasn’t that the plan, though? It’s been three months since my probation period ended and you never gave me the manager position, so I assumed you were looking for someone to take over.”

Owner: “I think it’s in your best interest to take some time off. Start thinking about your position here and whether you actually want to start moving up.”

Me: “I can’t. There’s no one to cover me.”

Owner: “You’re taking this time off.”

Me: “Is this a paid break?”

Owner: “No, consider this a time-out for you to get yourself sorted. Take two weeks to rest and we’ll see what your position will be like when you get back.”

Me: “[Owner], I can’t really afford to take that amount of time off. I can’t even take two days without having to come in and cover.”

Owner: “Don’t worry about the business right now. It’ll run without you.”

I am basically the manager at this point. I make the schedules. I do the orders. I know the codes to the safe and the alarm. I haven’t been allowed to hire someone to assist me and no one has worked enough time to be able to cover even half my shifts. I know this, the staff knows this, and the customers know it.

I make sure to block all work numbers and spend my two weeks off looking for another job. I manage to find one after a few days that pays significantly more. I send my resignation email to payroll and the owner — knowing he never checks it — delete my account off the POS system from home, and spend the rest of the leave catching up on well-deserved sleep.

According to my coworkers, s*** starts going wrong the next day. One of the openers doesn’t show and the next staff member doesn’t have keys. [Owner] isn’t answering his phone so they leave a message. [Owner] doesn’t show up until four hours after they were supposed to open, after one of the regulars calls him asking if the place is closed down.

Orders aren’t done, inventory is missed, four no-shows — you name it, it goes wrong.

[Owner] tries every way he can to get a hold of me, even using a customer’s phone to call me. Too bad I don’t answer any calls that aren’t already in my contacts.

After my weeks are up, I turn my phone back on and get a call the same day from [Owner]. We agree to meet the next day.

Owner: “So, you’ve had some time to think.”

Me: “I have. It’s really given me perspective on my position here.”

Owner: “We can start you back on your normal hours for now, and we’re looking for a manager to take on more of your responsibilities.”

Me: “Oh, that’s good. I’m actually quitting.”

He is silent for a few minutes. I think he is waiting to tell him I’m kidding. Sucks for you buddy, I’m serious.

Me: “I’ve already emailed payroll and removed my login from the computer. Here are my keys. Good luck.”

And I left. [Owner] tried calling me a few times but stopped once I told him to check his email.

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